Keep your smile healthy by brushing properly. Brushing properly and regularly means flashing your best, most healthy smile.
How to brush correctly
Dr. Dargham recommends brushing two to three times a day to promote dental health. Make the most of that time by updating your brushing technique. The following steps will help you get the most thorough clean.
- For the inner and outer surfaces, brush your teeth at a 45° angle in short circular strokes against the gum line.
- For the biting surfaces, hold the brush flat and brush back and forth.
- For the inside surfaces of the front teeth, tilt the brush vertically and use gentle up and down strokes with the tip of the brush.
- And don't forget your tongue! Whether with a brush or a tongue scraper, use a back to front sweeping motion to remove food particles and freshen your mouth. Halitosis (Bad Breath) is greatly reduced when your tongue is kept fresh and clean.
Remember to spend at least thirty seconds on each quadrant of your mouth, adding up to two minutes each time your brush.
How to floss correctly
Flossing is key to maintaining a healthy smile.
Here's how to do it properly:
As we know, gum disease starts at or below the gum line, at times extending between teeth. Regular flossing helps remove the plaque from these areas where a tooth brush cannot reach completely. Remember, floss only the teeth you want to keep!
The American Dental Hygienist's Association presents proper flossing techniques in four key elements:
- Wind eighteen inches of floss around the middle of each hand. Pinch the floss between your thumbs and index fingers, leaving one-to-two-inch length in between. Use your thumbs to direct the floss between the upper teeth.
- Keeping a one-to-two-inch length of floss tight between fingers, use your index fingers to guide the floss between the contacts of your lower teeth.
- Gently guide the floss between the teeth by using a zig-zag motion. Contour the floss around the side of the tooth.
- Slide the floss up and down against the tooth surface and under the gum line. Floss each tooth thoroughly with a clean section of floss.
Don't forget to floss under the gum line and along the sides of the teeth that border any spaces where teeth are missing - food can become trapped in these spaces, too!
Choose the right tooth paste
Toothpaste containing fluoride helps strengthen weak spots and prevent tooth decay. Ask Dr. Dargham and her team to recommend one which addresses your specific needs.
Sensitive teeth can benefit from specific tooth pastes and rinses designed to alleviate the discomfort associated with thermal or air sensitivity. Medical tooth pastes and rinses are available by prescription for more challenging to treat cases. Ask Dr. Dargham what she thinks may help you the most. Keeping your mouth clean and free of plaque is the first step in alleviating tooth sensitivity.
The general recommendation is to use as little tooth paste as possible, minimizing the use of abrasive, whitening tooth pastes. These have been shown to irritate the enamel and gums, resulting in tooth abrasion, heightened sensitivity, and a greater incidence of gingival (gum) recession.
Change your tooth brush
Dr. Dargham recommends replacing your toothbrush every three months. The right tooth brush for you depends on your specific needs, dental condition, and manual dexterity (or ability to use your hands and fingers properly). Many different types of toothbrushes are available. These range from manual to sonic/rotary/electric pieces. Also available are home care accessories that are used to address open spaces at the gum line, implant restorations, specific periodontal issues, and even orthodontic scenarios. Your specific needs may be identified and a special brush and, or, accessory recommended just for you. Our well trained team is available to assess, educate, and present you with what we feel would work best for your smile and oral health.
Please contact Dr. Dargham and her team to schedule your initial consultation. For your convenience, Dr. Dargham welcomes patients in one of two locations (Coconut Grove Dental Clinic and Biscayne Blvd. Dental Clinic), both located in the heart of Miami Dade County.
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